introductions for compare and contrast essays

Best Introductions for Compare and Contrast Essays


Compare and contrast essays are a staple in middle school and high school. It is better to be skilled at writing this kind of essay than miss out on vital points for your final grade.

We all know how a good first impression is a lasting impression. The same case applies to writing compare and contrast essays. A good introduction will gain the reader’s attention and maintain it, depending on the momentum you keep throughout the essay.

Read this article for tips on creating the best introduction for your compare and contrast essay. As you read, keep in mind that our writers are ready to help with your compare and contrast essay/any assignment in case you’re stuck or cant complete it because of a busy schedule. All you need to do is place an order with us!

What is a compare and contrast essay?

A compare and contrast essay is an essay that evaluates two things, ideas, or concepts from multiple angles. In this essay, two or more things are outlined in terms of their differences and similarities. Comparative analysis essays are meant to test the writer’s analytical skills on paper. As a student, you have encountered this kind of essay in middle school or high school.

Examples of introductions for compare and contrast essays

An introduction for a comparison essay is much different from introductions to other kinds of essays. It is more difficult in a compare and contrast essay because you have to show the differences and similarities that will be discussed later in your piece.

Example 1

The essay “The House on Mango Street” by Sandra Cisneros tells the story of a young girl named Esperanza who is growing up in a Hispanic neighborhood in Chicago. As the novel progresses, she describes her experiences as a child and teenager with her family, friends, and neighbors. Although Esperanza’s upbringing is vastly different from her mother’s, it is clear that there are many elements of her life that she wants to be just like her mother. In the next few paragraphs, I will talk about the similarities and differences between Esperanza and Mama.

Example 2

Throughout his work “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire?” by Jeffrey Archer, the author discusses in-depth and with great detail the world of business as seen from an executive’s perspective. He describes many different techniques that he uses to expand his global empire and the plans he has held for several years regarding his fundraising firm. His business practices, some unethical and some legal, are extremely revealing to the reader’s understanding of how a 21st-century corporate leader operates. Many of his business philosophies seem harsh at first; however, upon further examination, one can see that they are, in fact, not as cut and dry as they may appear. The most important thing to remember is that Archer believes in a firm hand at the helm. This is why he detests dealing with any subordinate who even seems to be questioning his authority. These are just a few of the similarities and differences between Jeffrey Archer’s views on business and those demonstrated by the other characters.

Example 3

Darwin’s theory about the origins of species and evolution had a tremendous impact on people’s faith in God, which prevailed for hundreds of years. The old unity fractured into two groups: those who believed life originated from more primitive organisms; and creationists who maintained that life, as we see it today, was created by a higher power. Although the arguments for evolution and creationism are largely oppositional, there are points on which both claims can coexist without sacrificing legitimacy. Sometimes, these two theories can even be complementary.

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Example 4

Asking children ‘What is it like to go from elementary school to middle school?’ is a common question many ask their friends each year. A student who has attended both schools can answer the question, sharing similarities and differences between them.

Example 5

In his book, “When the Shooting Stops…the Cutting Begins”, Alan Berliner talks about Hollywood and the making of movies. He describes different people’s roles in the movie business and classifies them into four groups: The Crew, The Producer, The Director, and The Star. Using his experience as an insider to describe all sides of movie production, Berliner talks about the similarities and differences of each role.

Example 6

Throughout history, many people have questioned the existence of God. These people, called atheists, believe that there is no higher power in charge of the universe. On the other hand, believers think that God exists and that he created everything. However, although both sides belong to different philosophies and ideologies, they both share some common characteristics. In this paper, I will analyze the foundations of atheism and how it affects one’s life.

Example 7

In his book “The World is Flat,” Thomas Friedman describes the different stages in which globalization took place to reach its present stage. He emphasizes that communication has become easier due to technological advances such as satellite TV, email, video, and teleconferencing. He also mentions how the changes in transportation through trains have supported globalization. However, the most evident change is that companies now store their information not only within a single country but all across the globe. This article will compare and contrast the different stages of globalization at present to what Friedman talked about in his book.

You may also check examples of complete compare and contrast essays!

How to write an introduction for a compare and contrast essay

Incorporate a hook into your introduction

Hooks, or attention-grabbers, are a good way to start an essay because the readers want to know more about what you will say next. This is because you got their attention with a controversial statement or a fun fact. As you plan on writing your introduction for your compare and contrast paper, think of a hook that will catch the readers off guard, which will make them want to read the whole essay.

Describe your topic

Before we get to the comparison, there’s the main topic your instructor gives you. This should be the precursor to the subjects for comparison. For instance, if you have been told to write a compare and contrast essay about the iPod and iPhone, it would be good to begin by briefly write about Apple as a company or the tech industry. This will lead well into mentioning the iPod and iPhone. Finally, don’t forget your thesis statement.

Develop a strong thesis statement

This is the main argument in your essay. A thesis statement should act as a roadmap, showing your readers the direction your essay will take. Your thesis should be arguable enough for you to support it with evidence throughout your paper. Additionally, the thesis statement should contain both subjects, their similarities, and their differences.

Don’t give too much information

You have to keep in mind that you are only introducing the topic to your readers. Therefore, write a brief description of the main topic, have a short description of the two subjects of comparison, and finally, your thesis statement.

Make sure your introduction is relevant to your topic

There are many times when students begin writing an introduction for their compare and contrast paper, but they decide to put personal ideas into it or not stick to the assigned topic. Your introduction should be specific enough for your readers to understand what you will write about in your essay.

Check for proper formatting

All instructors look at the writer’s formatting to ascertain they have followed their instructions. It would be unfortunate to write an interesting compare and contrast paper but with poor formatting. That would water down your efforts. Therefore, after you are finished writing your introduction draft, make sure your formatting is on point.

Tips on how to make your introduction more interesting, creative, and engaging

I. Be as specific as possible

II. State your thesis in an appealing way

III. Make it relevant to the rest of the essay’s topic

IV. Use a quote or interesting fact that adds more meaning to your introduction and will get the reader interested in what is going on

V. Set a favorable tone for the rest of your essay

VI. Give your reader a good first impression of you and your writing style

VII. Make your introduction easy to understand and follow

VIII. Include a good transition sentence, also known as a bridge word/phrase, between the previous paragraph and the next one

IX. Do not overuse the same introductory words or phrases; this will make you look unoriginal and boring!

X. Use short, simple sentences. This will help you to be direct.

XI. To make your introduction flow smoothly into the body paragraphs of your argumentative paper or compare and contrast essay, use transition words such as “On the other hand” or “While,” which will smoothly link both paragraphs.

XII. Summarize the key points in your introduction and make sure to include them again later on.

Advantages: The advantages of an effective introduction are as follows:

1.  It entertains and interests the reader by giving a general idea of what can be expected in the paper.

2.  It prepares the reader for what is about to come next.

3.  It leads the reader into your essay without confusion.

4.  Gives the reader an insight into what you are going to write about and how you will write it.

5. It ensures that the reader will read your entire paper.

Disadvantages: The disadvantages of a bad introduction are as follows:

1. It disrupts the flow of ideas in a paper.

2. It hinders understanding because it does not properly introduce what your essay is about.

3. It does not effectively capture the attention of your audience.

4. It gives a bad first impression for your writing skills before starting body paragraphs, which is important to impress a reader and make them want to read more of what you have written.

XIII. Make sure to always proofread your paper to avoid common mistakes having spelling or grammar mistakes.

The importance of a good introduction for a compare and contrast essay

The introductory paragraph of a compare and contrast essay projects the main topic intriguingly. The first sentence should also be a topic statement that presents the thesis decisively and convincingly. However, it should not be too long (six words or more). A good introduction is even known to captivate readers’ interests with foreshadowing.

Your introductory paragraph is also the one that sets your tone. It must be complete in its own right, using connecting words or phrases that show coherence throughout. However, it should also be simple, direct, and clear enough to tell readers what they are about to read.

You may also check our tips on writing a great conclusion, examples of informative essays, and different writing formats to improve your writing!


Creating a good first impression in your introduction should be a priority for any essay because it determines whether the reader will keep reading your essay or get bored quickly. You might have some insight in your body paragraphs, but if the introduction were mediocre, the reader wouldn’t get to that part. This is why you should focus on writing a strong introduction. We have provided some of the best introductory paragraphs for compare and contrast essays to act as a guide for you, alongside some useful tips to take your introductions to the next level.

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